Digest (November 8th, 2023)

Nov 08, 2023

HIV, STI, Viral Hepatitis, and Harm Reduction Digest

November 8th, 2023


NACCHO News and Announcements


NACCHO’s HIV Marketing Webinar: November 9th, 2023

As part of NACCHO’s marketing/communications webinar series, we’ll be exploring what it takes to create a successful HIV focused marketing campaign. Join us on November 9th at 2pm EST as we chat with health departments who have ran impactful campaigns, such as Fulton County and Clark County, to learn some tricks of marketing our HIV focused messaging to the people. If your health department is considering their own marketing campaign, you don’t want to miss this webinar! If interested, please register here.


NACCHO and KFF Social Impact Media Survey

NACCHO and KFF are interested in understanding how health departments are currently leading with marketing and communications work and what health departments are interested in learning more about to help better inform their communications efforts. Please have a team member who is familiar with your digital communications respond to this short survey! You can find the survey here.


Request for Applications: Using Effective Media Campaigns to Raise Awareness about Syphilis

In partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Division of STD Prevention (DSTDP), NACCHO is pleased to offer a funding opportunity to LHDs to support the creation of media and awareness building campaigns to increase community awareness of syphilis rates and prevention and treatment. NACCHO will provide funding for up to 10 health departments. Selected health departments will be required to implement a media and awareness building campaign aimed at decreasing the syphilis burden in their jurisdictions. Findings from this project will be shared broadly with other STI programs. Applications must be submitted by December 6, 2023, at 11:59 PT. Check out the Request for Applications here.


Request for Applications: Convening of Indian Country Congenital Syphilis Taskforce

In partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, NACCHO is pleased to offer a funding opportunity to support the convening of an Indian Country Congenital Syphilis Taskforce. This taskforce will bring together individuals from tribal, state, and local public health as well as national organizations to address the unique barriers and follow up to care and provide technical support and advocacy based on the input of its membership. Through this funding opportunity, NACCHO will provide up to $100,000 to one (1) organization to plan, convene, and support the taskforce.

Applications must be submitted by Friday, November 17th at 11:59 PM PT and selections will occur by Wednesday, November 23rd. See the Request for Applications for more details.


Request for Applications: Coordination of Indian Country Regional Syphilis Partnerships Summits

In partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, NACCHO is pleased to offer a funding opportunity to support the convening of three (3) regional partnership summits which will bring together individuals from tribal, state, and local public health to create action plans for their regions to address syphilis in the American Indian community. Through this funding opportunity, NACCHO will provide up to $450,000 to one (1) organization or individual to plan, convene, and support action planning for 3 regions—Northern Tier (MN, MT, SD, and ND), Southwest (AZ, NM, UT, NV, and CO), and Plains (OK, KS, IA, and NE). \

Applications must be submitted by Friday, November 10th at 11:59 PM PT and selections will occur by Friday, November 17th. Check out the RFA for more details.


Request for Proposals: Learning Collaboratives to Enhance Local Health Capacity to Serve Afghan Refugee, Immigrant, Migrant Communities

In partnership with the University of Minnesota National Resource Center for Refugee, Immigrants, and Migrants (NRC-RIM), NACCHO is pleased to offer a funding opportunity to LHDs and community-based organizations to collaborate to strengthen public health services targeting Afghan refugees, immigrants, and migrants.

Check out the Request for Proposals here.


Enhancing Local Health Capacity to Serve Afghan Refugee, Immigrant, Migrant Communities Consultant

Note: The deadline has been extended to Friday, December 1 at 5 pm ET.

In partnership with the University of Minnesota National Resource Center for Refugee, Immigrants, and Migrants (NRC-RIM), NACCHO is pleased to offer a funding opportunity to a consultant to provide training and technical assistance to build capacity of LHDs and CBOs to effectively collaborate with Afghan refugee, immigrant, and migrant communities for improved Afghan community public health. NACCHO will award up to $75,000 to a consultant or firm to support funded LHDs and CBOs to conduct resource and network mapping, community, and partner engagement, and develop a subsequent implementation plan to expand, tailor and adapt their services and resources to effectively reach current and future Afghan populations in their communities. As well as to identify successes, challenges, and lessons learned in these mapping and planning processes and disseminate to other jurisdictions.

For more information, check out the Request for Proposals here.


NACCHO Calls for Coordinated, Multisector Response to Dire New CDC Report on Newborn Syphilis Cases- New Data Highlight Need to Prioritize Rapid Testing and Treatment

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a new report calling for urgent action to stop the increase of newborn syphilis cases. The data, featured in CDC Vital Signs, shows that in 2022, there was a significant surge in cases of syphilis in newborns, or congenital syphilis affecting communities nationwide, with a disproportionate impact on marginalized populations.

As a result, CDC recommends more rapid testing, coupled with immediate treatment for anyone pregnant with positive results as well as regularly screening sexually active people for STIs; these actions would be pivotal steps in helping to mitigate this crisis. They also call for the engagement of all providers in addressing rising rates of STIs; everyone in the healthcare system can play a role in improving access to syphilis testing and treatment for all people. This means immediately increasing access to prevention, testing, and treatment—in jails, pharmacies, urgent care facilities, and emergency rooms—anywhere that an individual engages with a healthcare provider.

Click here to read more about NACCHO’s response to this report.



DIS Funding Recission Survey Findings

A few months ago, NACCHO disseminated a survey to understand the impact of the recission of the $400 million for DIS activities on disease intervention specialists (DIS) at local health departments. Survey results are in, and we appreciate those that contributed to it. Some findings from this survey can be found below:

Geographical representation

Survey responses were received from staff representing jurisdictions in Puerto Rico, the Northeast, Midwest, South, and West areas of the country.

Number of staff working as a DIS or in a similar role

On average, jurisdictions indicated that around 20 individuals worked as a DIS or in a similar role at the local health department. It is also important to note the range (10) due to the variation and diverse group of respondents.


FTE positions allotted to DIS work

On average, jurisdictions indicated that around 7 FTE positions were allotted to DIS work and on average, around 2 of those positions were funded through CDC’ DIS Workforce Development Funding. Due to the variation and diverse group of respondents, it is also important to note the range (10) for DIS-allotted FTE, as well as the range (15) for Workforce development funded FTE.

Anticipated impacts

Jurisdictions that completed the survey indicated the number of DIS positions, including FTE positions, that would be cut because of the funding recission. Here is a breakdown of the responses to the below questions: Do you anticipate that DIS or other positions will be cut because of the DIS Workforce Development Funding recission?

How many FTE do you expect will be cut?

If folks are interested in additional findings from this survey, please reach out to Daisha Washington ([email protected]). Since this was a small sample, it is important to interpret these results with caution as they are not nationally representative. NACCHO is appreciative of those that contributed to the survey as it is evident that the recission of funds will impact the DIS workforce, as well as overall health department program planning and implementation which then impacts people with, or at risk for STIs.


NACCHO’s Digital Marketing 101 Session Recording

NACCHO and KFF recently kicked off their marketing and communications webinar series with the first session, Digital Marketing 101! During the session, participants were joined by Building Healthy Online Communities (BHOC) and KFF Social Impact Media to learn how to develop social media campaigns during public health events and for emerging sexual health strategies. Participants also learned how to use digital platforms to reach specific audiences with public health information. The recording from the session can be found here. Thanks to all that joined and stay tuned for the next session (HIV Marketing Webinar) scheduled for Thursday, November 9th at 2pm EST.


HIV, STI, & Hepatitis Resources and News


CDC Recommendations for Hepatitis C Testing Among Perinatally Exposed Infants and Children — United States, 2023

The elimination of hepatitis C is a national priority. During 2010-2021, hepatitis C virus (HCV) acute and chronic infections increased in the United States and had devastating consequences, including cirrhosis, liver cancer, and death. Rates of acute infections more than tripled among reproductive-aged persons during this time. This increase in acute HCV infection has resulted in increasing rates of HCV infections during pregnancy.

In 2020, because of continued increases in HCV infections in the United States, CDC released universal screening recommendations for adults, which included recommendations for screening for pregnant persons during each pregnancy. To read CDC’s four new recommendations, check out the report here.


New CDC Funding Opportunity: Support and Scale Up of HIV Prevention Services in Sexual Health Clinics

Centers for Disease Control has published a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) announcement, CDC-RFA-PS-24-0003, that supports the Ending the HIV Epidemic in the U.S. (EHE) initiative by scaling up HIV prevention and care services in sexual health clinics, including STI specialty clinics. This NOFO builds on progress made scaling up HIV prevention services in STI clinics through Component C of CDC’s PS20-2010 cooperative agreement. PS-24-0003 will further strengthen the infrastructure of sexual health clinics and improve service delivery to address the syndemic of HIV & other STIs and foster additional strategic partnerships. Eligible applicants include public and nonprofit private entities that are providers of clinical sexual health services in the proposed service area, or plan to provide the majority of funds to provider(s) of clinical sexual health services in the proposed area.

The solicitation for this cooperative agreement is posted at grants.gov.

Quick facts about PS24-0003:

  • 5 yr. cooperative agreement
  • Avg. yearly awards of $600,000 - 1,000,000
  • Many types of eligible applicants, including state & local health departments
    • Must demonstrate capacity for specific sexual health services
    • Do not have to be an EHE Component C-funded clinic
    • Applicants from EHE jurisdictions are strongly preferred
    • Applicants not receiving other federal funding for similar services (ex. HRSA BPHC EHE / PCHP funding) are strongly preferred

An informational webinar for applicants was held on Monday, November 6. A recording and answers to Q&A will be available on DSTDP’s website here in mid-November. Additional resources for applicants are available below:


Dr. Laura Bachmann to serve as Acting Director of DSTDP

NACCHO would like to thank Dr. Laura Bachmann for agreeing to be the Acting Director for the Division of STD Prevention (DSTDP), NCHHSTP, effective December 1, 2023. We know that Dr. Bachmann is an exceptional ally for the field of STI prevention, testing, and treatment and we are thrilled to have someone who previously served as the Medical Officer in a local health department shepherd the Division during this time of transition. We are sad to see Dr. Leandro Meña leave and will miss his leadership but look forward to working with Dr. Bachmann as the Acting Director of DSTDP.


Legality of Drug Checking Equipment in the United States

Because contaminants, including fentanyl, are now present in the illicit drug supply throughout the U.S., helping people determine what is in the drugs they obtain can be an impactful harm reduction intervention. The easiest and most inexpensive way to accomplish this is often through the use of fentanyl and xylazine test strips. This resource outlines the legality of drug checking equipment in 50 states and the District of Columbia.


Upcoming Opportunities


Pioneering Self-Care Solutions to Drive Access to HIV Prevention and Family Planning

November 9, 2023

This session will amplify lessons from five self-care interventions in family planning and HIV prevention — with case studies on DMPA-SC, the Caya Diaphragm, the Dual Prevention Pill, HIV self-testing, and Triggerise, an mHealth platform – to highlight successful self-care strategies applicable across settings and discuss the future of self-care in sexual and reproductive health.
Register Here.


The Resurgence of Syphilis and Congenital Syphilis: What Can We Do Now

November 14, 2023

Join Indian Country ECHO for a Grand Rounds focused on syphilis staging and treatment in Indian Health Service, Tribal and Urban Indian (I/T/U) primary care clinics. Dr. Reno reviews the current epidemiology of syphilis and congenital syphilis, discusses considerations for staging and where diagnostic mistakes are made, the latest best practices for syphilis treatment in the time of medication shortages, and provides strategies for a syndemic approach and why it may be essential to syphilis care.

Register Here.



Building Equity Through Advocacy -- An Integrated, Status-Neutral, Approach for Ending the Epidemic Among Black Gay Men in the South

November 15, 2023

Join The Choice Agenda, PrEP in Black America, and Federal AIDS Policy Partnership Research Working Group for their webinar on Building Equity Through Advocacy. Speakers Include:

  • Dr. LaRon Nelson, Yale
  • Christopher Hucks-Ortiz, HealthHIV
  • Dr. Cedric Pulliam, Prevention Access Campaign

Register Here.



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